Losing weight has been a lifelong struggle for one Niagara County resident until recently. Cate Laughlan says her life changed when she became a contestant on "The Biggest Loser." YNN's Antoinette DelBel has more on Laughlan's journey and how she's taking control of her health.
WHEATFIELD, N.Y. — As 28-year-old Cate Laughlan laces up her sneakers for her workout, she admits exercising hasn't always been her strong suit.
"I never wanted to come to a gym,” she said. “I've been to gyms before and when you're the fat person at the gym, you just feel like everybody is starting at you."
A couple years ago, the Ransomville native weighed in at 265 pounds. At her biggest, Laughlan says she never wanted to believe it.
"I never saw myself as big as I was either,” she said. “I've always known I was big, but I always looked in the mirror and thought, 'You don't look so bad.'"
Laughlan started having health problems. After a doctor's visit, she knew she had to take control of her weight.
"He basically said, 'You've gotten so big that your heart is literally not strong enough to pump the fluid up and out of your legs.'"
Laughlan hit the gym and lost 30 pounds on her own but needed help.
That's when she became a contestant on the 14th season of NBC's reality show, "The Biggest Loser," where 15 contestants compete to lose the most amount of weight for a chance to win a quarter million dollars.
Laughlan looks back on her early morning workouts.
"It's dark out and the moon is so bright out there in California and all this midst is coming off the pool and there we are swimming laps at 5 a.m.,” she said. “It was the most invigorating thing."
Although Laughlan was eliminated in the third episode, she's still in the running for $100,000 in the March finale.
She says the show helped her get into an exercise routine and eat healthy. These days she works out six days a week, doing things she never used to be able to do, like running seven miles on a treadmill.
Weighing 19 pounds less when she was eliminated, Laughlan says she still has more to go.
"I never set a numerical goal though,” she said. “I figured I would stop when I was happy."
With exercising now her strong suit, Laughlan says she’s also working to achieve her lifelong goal of running a marathon with her brother.